This one’s for you. All of you. On this one day of the year created to celebrate the joy that you bring to your little, and not so little, people.
Yes, you’ll have had one less hour of sleep than normal (and you don’t normally get that much anyway, right?). Yes, your baby will still cry, your toddler will still tantrum, and your teenager will still lie in until noon. But take a minute. A minute just for you. To read this and remember that you’re their glitter and their glue: holding it all together and making their world sparkle while you’re at it.
For all you Mums to Be. Growing your babies and loving them before you’ve met them; before you’ve held those tiny hands. For the aches and pains that you’re grimacing through because you know it’ll be worth it when you meet them. For the tiredness that creeps up on you and knocks you for six. For the sickness that’s taking every ounce of your strength. For the glasses of wine you’re refusing. For each time you cradle your bump and whisper words of encouragement to the little life inside you.
For all you New Mums. Cradling your newborns. Feeling the love engulf you and the exhaustion wash over you. For all the sleepless nights. For the bouncing and shushing and endless wondering what might be wrong. For the guilt that creeps in when you’re not having a happy day. All the times you look in the mirror and don’t quite recognise the person staring back. All the cuddles. The staring in wonder at your little bundle of joy. The endless nappy changes. The hum of the washing machine again. The milk stains hastily wiped off another clean outfit. All the cold cups of tea.
For all you Mums of toddlers. Trying to keep hold of that tiny hand though it sometimes pulls away from you. For the days when you count down the minutes until bedtime, then watch their angelic face as they sleep. For the tantrums you endure. The cuddles you give. The life lessons you’re helping them learn everyday. For the food you lovingly prepare, even though they might not eat it. For reassurance you offer, making them feel invincible. The nights you stumble out of bed at the sound of their cries, and then sit cold on the floor until they return to sleep. For banishing the monsters from under the bed. For the being a playmate and protector. The awe as you see them flourish each day.
For all you Mums of not so little people. For constantly offering love and cuddles even when you’re turned down. For helping your child to realise their dreams. For helping them be their own person, and be proud of it. For all the sleepless nights of worry. The hours spent helping on homework. The frustrations that they vent at you. The reassurance you offer to help them be proud of who they are. The times you can’t seem to do anything right, but plod on regardless. The laughter. The joy at watching them grow but sadness as they prepare to leave you. The pride that swells within you and grows each day.
For all you Mums holding your babies in your hearts and not your hands. For all the pain that you’ve endured. For all the memories you cherish. I can’t begin to imagine what you’ve been through, but know that I’m holding you in my heart too. You’re not forgotten today.
I’m thinking of all of you this Mother’s Day. Whatever shape or form motherhood takes for you. Whether it’s the same as mine, or whether it’s different. We’re all here today. Doing our best. Facing head on whatever each day throws at us. Loving our babies with all our might. Standing shoulder to shoulder in this chapter of our lives.
Thank you Mums. For all that you do. For the unconditional love that you share. For all the times that you put yourself second, and expect nothing in return. Though your small people might not be able to say it, though your big people might forget to: thank you. You’re all wonderful in my eyes.